News release from 24/11/2022
Council reminds renters to seek help on mould issues at their homes
People in South Cambridgeshire, who rent homes in the private sector, are being urged to seek help from the Council if mould issues are not resolved by their landlords.
The reminder follows the tragic case of Awaab Ishak, a two-year-old boy who died following chronic exposure to mould at the family home in Rochdale.
In South Cambridgeshire, the District Council has a role in ensuring that homes in the private sector and the Council’s own properties do not contain health hazards.
Most properties within the private rented sector in the district are in good condition, but the Council’s Environmental Health team investigate any complaints.
Private Sector and Housing Association tenants can make a complaint about the condition of their home by emailing email@example.com
The following information is required:
- Their address
- The landlord’s details
- What the issue is
- How long it has been a problem
- Any photographs available to show the extent of the issue
The Council has the power to take the appropriate enforcement action if there are issues that need to be resolved. This action could include writing to the landlord to ensure the issue is resolved, but the Council can also serve a legal notice to instruct works to be carried out.
The Council manages around 5,500 Council homes. Leading councillors have said that the Council takes reports of mould seriously and does not assume that damp is a consequence of the lifestyle of tenants. Officers support people on the issue by:
- Actively informing residents about methods to reduce damp and mould
- Using specialist contractors to assess and remedy any issues reported
- Encouraging all operatives to check for damp and mould when they are working in properties as part of safeguarding and welfare procedures
- When any repair is reported, the Council asks tenants if there are other issues at their home
The Council had already planned to carry out a stock condition survey on all Council-owned homes next year which will identify any issues with mould, or risk of mould developing to ensure proactive action can be taken.
Cllr Henry Batchelor, South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Lead Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “We always investigate mould issues when complaints are raised from tenants in the private rented sector. The tragic news of the death of Awaab Ishak from Rochdale shows the devastating impact mould can have on families. All our thoughts are with their family. Although rented properties in this area are generally in good condition, we want to ensure anyone renting is aware that the Council is here to help you if your landlord does not address your concerns. Homes should be a safe place for you and your family, so please contact us for help”.
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